According to Theresa Mansfield, her son was walking Casey, the Family Dog, behind their West Bucksin Road home when the incident occurred. As the boy and his dog walked up the hillside, they came across the cyanide bomb, which detonated, knocking the boy onto his back and killing the family Lab. Xtreme Idaho quotes the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office as saying the cyanide bomb had been placed their on behalf of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, as a control device to kill predators, such as coyotes. When activated, the bombs reportedly release the cyanide in a burst.

Saying the bomb is known as an M-44 predator control device, the spokesman said it is more commonly known as a “cyanide bomb.” According to Mansfield, when authorities arrived at the scene, they found a second of these devices near her home.

Boy covered in an unknown substance and the dog was dead

Mark Mansfield, the boy’s father, told police dispatchers at the time that the family dog had died and that their son was covered in an unknown substance. Authorities took the boy to the Portneuf Medical Center for cyanide poisoning testing. Fortunately the boy was not badly affected by the incident and was soon returned home. While the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office continued its investigations, fire department and Hazmat personnel headed to the scene.

According to Sheriff Lorin Nielsen, the young boy was lucky not to be injured himself. Nielsen said the boy’s guardian angel must have been protecting him during the incident.

The family mourns Casey, the family dog

It turns out the family’s three-year-old Lab, Casey, was soaked with cyanide. Mansfield said the dog was the world to them, saying her children were still weeping over his death.

The family is also pretty shake up about the fact that a cyanide bomb was so close to their home, in an area often frequented by their son. Theresa said she is scared to let her children go anywhere near that hill again. However, it is far worse for her son, who had to watch the family pet die. Mansfield added that this is something that can stay with you for a very long time.

Beware of cyanide bombs

Meanwhile the Sheriff’s department issued a statement about the incident, noting that the cyanide bombs are dangerous to both animals and humans. Including a photo of the device in their statement, they warned people not to approach the devices and should they see one, they should immediately contact their local law enforcement agency. ABC News reports that the cyanide bombs are smeared with bait and are spring-activated. Reportedly as an animal, such as a coyote, pulls on the trap, it shoots the poison into the animal’s mouth.